YOU CANNOT STAY ON THE SUMMIT FOREVER

George Mallory is quoted as having replied to the question “Why do you want to climb Mount Everest?” with the retort “Because it’s there”. A friend recently sent this quote to me with the attached photo which says it more eloquently:

Summit of Katahdin

You cannot stay on the summit forever; you have to come down again. So why bother in the first place?

Just this: What is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs, one sees.

One descends, one sees no longer, but one has seen. There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up. When one can no longer see, one can at least still know.

René Daumal

 


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